Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For February 08, 2015

Percentage of workers who think people become less courteous as they climb the corporate ladder, according to a survey by Accountemps: 70

Source: Accountemps.

Amount of money the average person is planning to spend on candy, cards, gifts and more this Valentine's Day, up from $126.03 last year, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation: $130.97

Projected total spending: $18.6 billion

Percentage who will give flowers, with total spending expected to top $1.9 billion: 37

Percentage who will treat their special someone to jewelry, spending more than $4.4 billion on diamonds, gold and silver: 20

Source: National Retail Federation.

Number of American men who have a hidden bank account or credit card, according to Creditcard.com: 4.4 million

Number of American women who have a hidden bank account or credit card: 2.8

Percentage of men who say it is OK for their partner/spouse to make a purchase of $500 or more without their knowledge: 31

Percentage of women who say the same: 18

Source: Creditcards.com.

Number of stadium seats that were empty when the first Super Bowl was held in the Los Angeles Coliseum in 1967, according to Convergex: 30,000

Cost of a ticket: $12

Median online price a week prior to this year's Super Bowl: $5,684

Source: Convergex.

Projected average amount that diners plan to spend to celebrate Valentine's Day, 63 percent more than the typical check average of $85 per couple, according to a survey released by OpenTable: $139

Percentage of respondents who say talking and texting at the table is the biggest dining faux pas a date can commit: 58.5

Source. OpenTable.

Amount Americans estimate that the federal government wastes of each tax dollar, according to a survey by Gallup: 51 cents

Amount Americans estimate that state governments waste of each tax dollar: 42 cents

Amount Americans estimate that local governments waste of each tax dollar: 37 cents

Source: Gallup Organization.

Decade when Percy Spencer of the Raytheon company, working on a military radar device, noticed that his candy bar had gotten soft, and, intrigued, experimented with irradiating some kernels of popcorn, which promptly burst: 1940s

Year the first consumer model microwave ovens were introduced, costing only a little less than a new car ($1,200) and requiring professional installation: 1955

Today, percentage of homes across the country that have microwave ovens: 90

Estimated annual value of the manufacturing of microwave ovens and other electric cooking range business: $2.5 billion

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Percentage of American adults who agree that "doing what's right regardless of personal consequences" is the trait that makes a person most worthy of admiration, according to a Harris poll: 76

Of those who admire a specific U.S. president, percentage who do so because they "command the support and respect of others": 66

Source: Harris Interactive.

Percentage of families with heads ages 55 to 64 who are carrying some debt (averaging $73,211), according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute: 78.5

Percentage of income that is devoted to debt: 10

Source: EBRI.

Ranks of Orlando, Las Vegas, New York City and Miami on the list of the most popular domestic destinations for the 2014-2015 winter season, according to members of the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA): 1, 2, 3, 4

Ranks of Cancun, Rome, London and Paris on the list of the most popular international destinations for the 2014-2015 winter season: 1, 2, 3, 4

Source: American Society of Travel Agents.

Idle Thought

"The truth isn't always beauty, but the hunger for it is." -- Nadine Gordimer, Nobel laureate

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at johnmacintyre@bwr.eastlink.ca.)